The Greener, The Better

Every day brings in new hope. We leave the past behind us, and live in the present and dream about the future. We learn from our past mistakes and do things in the present for a brighter future.

The world is getting a tougher place to live. The year 2011 witnessed the 99% challenging the BIG 1%. It’s a competitive world, where the rich become richer and the poor, poorer. In addition to the financial revolution, the world also saw the dawn of a number of public agitations against the powerful. To top it all, the global temperature is rising, and so is the population.

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Electric Power From Waste Water

Electric power from waste water

According to recent report by the Science Journal,a research team at the  Pennsylvania State University developed a technology that would simultaneously treat the water and produce power. They think the process could be used to provide clean water and power for homes in the developing countries. The idea of electric power from waste water can be real boon to all developing countries.

Electric Power From Waste Water Engineers at Pennsylvania State University have combined two cutting-edge energy-generation technologies—microbial fuel cells and reverse electrodialysis (RED)—to make a hybrid device that could generate enough energy from waste water to power its treatment and even feed some extra electricity into the grid.

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National Science Day 2012

National Science Day is celebrated in India on February 28 every year since 1986 to mark the discovery of the Raman effect by Indian physicist Sir Chandrasekhara Venkata Raman on 28 February 1928.

History : In 1986, the National Council for Science and Technology Communication (NCSTC) asked the Government of India to designate February 28 as National Science Day. The event is now celebrated all over the country in schools, colleges, universities and other academic, scientific, technical, medical and research institutions.

The focal theme for 2012 National Science Day is “Clean Energy Options and Nuclear Safety

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Preserve Ozone Layer !!

Today is International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer. Since 1995, September 16 of each year is celebrated as the International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer. This date has been designed as such by the United Nations General Assembly  in order to commemorate the signing of the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer.

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Some people say man is unique and special than all other organisms. But, every man is unique compared to other men. We have certain likes and dislikes.
Being a higher organism, both socially and intellectually, we have to make certain preferences all through our life, and almost everyday. We’ve to make certain compromises to lead a happy life. One such critical choice we make in our lives is regarding our career. So, most people will settle for a job that helps them pay their bills in time.

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The Alchemy of Life

Deoxyribonucleic acid, popularly known as D.N.A is the building block of life. Every organism, except for a few viruses, have D.N.A as their genetic material. It is responsible for transmitting vital characters from one generation to another. But, these are all basic facts known to practically everyone.
The curious fact is that, a few elements is the basic block of life. These complex molecules are responsible for all our characters and helps pass them from one generation to another. Somewhere in the past, due to reasons yet not fully understood completely, the first prototypes of nucleic acids were created. These then combined with each other and became more complex and evolved into life.

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The Operating System

For the functioning of a computer, we need an operating system or O.S. Just like an operating system is necessary for the working of a computer, human beings too need an operating system to keep us working. It’s our mind. It is more complex and efficient than any of it’s man made counterparts. Our mind is the platform that helps us live in a sane and social manner.
All the characteristics of an operating system holds good for human mind too. Mind acts as a resource manager and helps us do our work in an efficient way possible, by suitably allocating our talents for the tasks to be performed. Mind works on the human body, just like an operating system works on a bare machine. Mind translates our thoughts into actual muscular or skeletal action, while an O.S translates high level script to machine code.

This natural O.S known as the mind is functionally more superior to any computer operating system. It is self programmable. In case of computers, new software need to be installed for improving the functionality of the system. But, if these software suffer from any code error, they will malfunction or has bugs. They are not self correcting. But human mind is self correcting and has learning capability, that today’s operating systems envy.
Security is a major concern for developers. The O.S must be impervious to attack of malicious software and hackers. Human mind too has no foolproof security measures. The mind can be easily corrupted by other people, who are much like hackers. These real world hackers inject malicious ideals and ideas into other people. There is an unlocked door in our mind. If someone can spot the location of that door, he may sneak into the mind to control our body.
A firewall can be installed to protect a computer from attack. Likewise, we too should have a firewall to keep intruders out of our mind. It is called conscience. We must weigh each and every of our choices before taking any decision. We must be able to spot the good from the bad. Our conscience must do this vital task for us. We may be tricked into using our instincts instead of our consciences. It will land us and others in danger.
Our mind is usually divided into the conscious and the sub-conscious minds. We may try to be someone, by controlling the conscious mind. But we have our true self inside the depths of our sub- conscious mind. It controls all our involuntary emotions. It’s like the kernel of an operating system. The core around which all other things are developed.
Mind plays an important role in our lives. We can only sense it’s presence, like an in-built software. The role of our mind is so crucial that our very existence as a sane being depends very much on the health of our mind. If an operating system crashes, we can re install it to get the computer working. But if the mind crashes, the whole thing is lost. There is no return from such a situation. That’s the major difference between the human mind and an ordinary, man made O.S. Even if someday, we can re program our minds using some freak technology, the human mind in it’s natural state is far far advanced than it, in many matters.
The mind is the world’s first and the best operating system. It is a free O.S, that comes with such exciting packages like emotions. We must make it secure, as it can control a human being. How you use your mind is equally important as for what you use it. We must keep that in mind.

jupiter stripes

Jupiter is getting back its lost belt

One of Jupiter’s stripes went missing Earlier this year. The Southern Equatorial Band (SEB) started to get lighter and paler, and eventually disappeared.

Now, follow-up images from both professional and amateur astronomers are showing some activity in the area of the SEB, and scientists now believe the vanished dark stripe is making a comeback.

The reason Jupiter seemed to ‘lose’ this band – camouflaging itself among the surrounding white bands – is that the usual downwelling winds that are dry and keep the region clear of clouds died down,” said Glenn Orton, a research scientist at JPL.

The stripe, known as the South Equatorial Belt (SEB), is located just south of Jupiter’s equator and can be seen with amateur telescopes. It is usually brown, but last spring, it turned white. In early November, amateur astronomer Christopher Go of Cebu City in the Philippines observed a prominent bright spot in the unusually whitened belt – which astronomers are calling a “storm’ on Jupiter. This bright spot caused professional and amateur astronomers around the world to turn their telescopes toward Jupiter.

After follow-up observations with NASA’s Infrared Telescope Facility (IRTF), the 10-meter Keck telescope and the 8-meter Gemini telescope, all atop Mauna Kea in Hawaii, scientists now believe the stripe is making a comeback.

The white band wasn’t the only change on the big, gaseous planet. At the same time, Jupiter’s Great Red Spot became a darker red color. Orton said the color of the spot – a giant storm on Jupiter that is three times the size of Earth and a century or more old – will likely brighten a bit again as the South Equatorial Belt makes its comeback.


License to Kill

The present generation lives much more comfortably than their ancestors. Each passing day brings in further luxury to our lives. Our immediate ancestors led a much more challenging life in their earlier periods. The complexity of life increases as we travel back in time. The ancient people led a life, that’s quite unthinkable now.

As the hardships in leading a life decreased, the complexity of human relationships and behavior increased. As the physical hardships subsided, the psychological or mental hardships became more prominent. Human behavior took a detour from its intended, social path. Love and forgiveness took a back seat when aggressiveness infiltrated into the sanctum of human mind. Hatred among men lead to bloodshed. Now, weapons are an integral part of human life, to defend, and to attack.

The origin of weapons can be traced back to the pre historic times when man was a nomad. There are archaeological evidences of weapons, dating to about 100,000 years old. In the race for survival, human beings used unshaped stones and wooden clubs to defend themselves from predators, and to prey on weaker animals. It is my belief that clubs were used for defense and spears, with sharp edges were used for attack. I came to this belief from the fact that predators will always come to you in near range (because they think that they have an advantage over the prey), while one has to wait patiently for a prey and attack from a distance. But, it’s also reasonable to think that one can use a spear to knock off a predator from a distance.

That was the Neolithic age, or the later part of Stone age, around 10,000 BC. By around 3,000 BC, people began to use metals in their weapons. By this time, man came out of the ‘nomadic hunter’ label to the ‘civilized being’. Agriculture became the prominent occupation, as it provided enough food at all seasons for the growing population. Thus, civilization was born. People lived in groups, separated as families, but united as a whole. Thus the complexities of social life came into existence. A social structure was thus established. A village consisting of farmers, blacksmiths, milkmen, potters etc was beginning to form.

For the smooth functioning of a society, a set of laws were formulated. But, the greed of some people led to stealing of animals, (usually herds of cows) and other disputes. The victims of such atrocities usually responded in violent ways leading to death of men at the behest of other men.

These led to the formation of military troops for defense and for attack.

As soon as a complex social structure was established, the complexity in human relationships too increased. They formed certain bonds like families. The classification of people on the basis of material assets and jobs added further complexity. The greed for assets and jealousy among people led to crimes. The desire of certain individuals to eliminate some others gave their everyday tools a new name – lethal weapons. Thus weapons became tools for causing injury or harm to fellow beings, in addition to their intended use.

The formation of military troops led to increase in weapon production and ultimately to weapon design and creation of newer weapons. Iron age was a promising period to weapon developers. The abundance of iron ore, and easy workability led to the production of more lethal weapons. So, in addition to the improvements made to earlier weapons, men started creating weapons exclusively for killing one another. Along with weapons, shields and other devices to save one from enemy weapons too were developed.

As time progressed, excessive research on weapons were carried out , in the pretext of defending one’s homeland. This is necessary, but lead to certain unfortunate consequences. A landmark in the history of weapons is the introduction of guns. At first, gun proved to be a good hunting weapon, with its long range and power. But, soon it became the universal weapon for military applications and other uses. The ease with which a person could acquire a gun led to many crimes. This made it more lethal than earlier weapons. Guns provided protection to outlaws and the possession of one became the license to do crimes. Later research led to the development of automatic guns that can fire several rounds continuously. They were used mainly for military purposes.

Bombs and missiles proved to be more lethal than their colleagues. They just don’t kill people, they do much worse. It’s no secret that nations all around the world are spending more money on weapon development than infrastructure development. Intelligent men are employed to design newer weapons that can kill more effectively.

Weapons have become a tool for killing each other. Some do it for personal gains, while some others do it for a living. The blood thirsty authorities with their crooked policies, for personal benefits, are making this world, a living hell. Many generations have suffered the ill effects of weapons. We must refrain from this arms race to restore the long lost peace and sense of security.


What is Vacuum?

All men might have gone through a feeling of ‘nothingness’, atleast once in their lives. “Oh! There’s nothing interesting in it”, “What are you doing now?” “Nothing much!”, “I’m totally bored! Nothing to do” are some sentences we often say ourselves or hear others say. What’s common to all these? Nothing but, ‘nothing’.
The term used to denote ‘nothingness’ in science is vacuum. Put in simple, yet scientifically correct terms, ‘Vacuum is a state with no particles’. So, perfect vacuum means complete absence of particles. It is usually difficult to attain physically. Physically feasible, partial vacuum finds many applications in our everyday lives.

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